Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (CFP)


The purpose of CFP is to achieve community benefits by establishing community forests through 50/50 financial assistance competitive grant awards to local governments, federally recognized tribes, and eligible nonprofit organizations. Grant funds are used by successful applicants to acquire and protect private forestlands. Community forest benefits are specified in the authorizing statute (16 U.S.C. 2103(d) & 2109(e)) and final rule (36 CFR Part 230), including: economic benefits from sustainable forest management and tourism; environmental benefits from natural resource conservation such as storm water management, clean air and water, and wildlife habitat; forest-based educational programs, model forest stewardship activities; and recreational opportunities. Public access to the community forests is required and intended to enhance public health and well-being. In addition, the program authorizes allocation of a limited amount of appropriated funds to State Foresters and equivalent Indian tribe officials for technical assistance to implement community forest projects.

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Forest Service, Department of Agriculture
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Not applicable.
Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978, P.L. 95-313 as amended, 16 USC 2103d. The final rule for implementation of the Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program (36 CFR Part 230) was published in the Federal Register in October 2011.
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Project grants are awarded to local governments, Indian tribes, or nonprofit organizations (as defined in 16 U.S.C. 2103(d)) qualified to acquire land and with the authority to manage land.
Beneficiary Eligibility
No additional information
Not applicable.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is required. Regional or International Institute of Tropical Forestry (IITF) Offices and the State Foresters can be a resource for assistance.
Application Procedure
2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. 2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. An annual request for applications will be published in the Federal Register with detailed instructions and updates to application procedures. Applicants will provide a narrative on the project with up to two eight inch by eleven inch maps, the draft community forest plan, and all forms required to process the grant (final rule section 230.7). Documentation of applicant eligibility (final rule section 230.2), information regarding the property, and information regarding the proposed community forest must be included in the application.
Award Procedure
The Forest Service will publish an annual request for applications based on the funding proposed in the President's Budget. The Forest Service will prioritize a national project list and issue grant to eligible applicants based on the amount provided in Congressional appropriations.
Contact the headquarters or regional location, as appropriate for application deadlines
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
From 30 to 60 days. Extensions may be requested 60 days in advance according to the terms of the award.
How are proposals selected?
The Forest Service will give priority to an application that maximizes the delivery of community benefits through a high degree of public participation including underserved communities; and (1) Type and extent of community benefits provided. Community benefits include: (i) Economic benefits such as timber and non-timber products resulting from sustainable forest management and tourism (ii) Environmental benefits, including clean air and water, stormwater management, and wildlife habitat (iii) Benefits from forest-based experiential learning, including K-12 conservation education programs; vocational education programs in disciplines such as forestry and environmental biology; and environmental education through individual study or voluntary participation in programs offered by organizations such as 4-H, Boy or Girl Scouts, Master Gardeners, etc.(iv) Benefits from serving as replicable models of effective forest stewardship for private landowners (v) Recreational benefits secured through public access, such as hiking, hunting and fishing (2) Extent and nature of community engagement in the establishment and long-term management of the community forest including from underserved communities (3) Amount of cost share leveraged (4) Extent to which the community forest contributes to a landscape conservation initiative (5) Extent of due diligence completed on the project, including cost share committed and status of appraisal (6) Likelihood that, unprotected, the property would be converted to non-forest uses (7) Costs to the Federal government (8) Additional considerations as may be outlined in the RFP
How may assistance be used?
Landowner participation in the program is voluntary and consists of conveying land to achieve conservation objectives.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Performance Reports: The Forest Service program manager will conduct monitoring activities to measure performance against established grant objectives.
Not applicable.
Access to financial reports shall be provided to Forest Service or its designees as described in the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching is mandatory. 50%. Funds reimbursed by the Federal Government may not exceed 50 percent of the total project budget expended by the grantee. The non-Federal share of the match may be in the form of cash, services, or in-kind contribution. This program may use up to 10% of its funds for each fiscal year to provide technical assistance grants. Technical assistance funds do not have a matching requirement and are available to state foresters or equivalent officials of Indian tribes with a funded project in their jurisdiction.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
The annual request for applications will describe in greater detail the award assistance length and time phasing. The initial grant period is 2 years and funds are released in accordance with the final rule, including completion of acquisition requirements under section 230.8. As determined by the award terms.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
Forest Service S&PF, Cooperative Forestry 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Stop Code 1123 Washington, DC 20250
Headquarters Office
Scott Stewart
1400 Independence Ave SW, MS-1123
Washington, DC 20850 US
Phone: 202-205-1618
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants (Discretionary)) FY 22$4,301,250.00; FY 23 est $4,000,000.00; FY 24 FY 21$4,022,489.00; FY 20$4,983,000.00; FY 19$4,400,000.00; FY 18$4,410,000.00; FY 17$2,000,000.00; FY 16$2,000,000.00; - Annual funding levels to be determined per Presidential budget request.
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Individual grant applications may not exceed $600,000 in program financial assistance. Range is from $86,150 to $600,000, with an average of $329,000
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
Not applicable.
Examples of Funded Projects
Not applicable.


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